• KGS/USD = 0.01172 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00211 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09391 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01172 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00211 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09391 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01172 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00211 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09391 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01172 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00211 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09391 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01172 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00211 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09391 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01172 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00211 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09391 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01172 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00211 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09391 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01172 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00211 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09391 0%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%

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EBRD Plans to Double Investments in Kazakhstan in 2024

Kazakhstan's Deputy Prime Minister, Nurlan Baibazarov, met with Hussein Ozkhan, the Acting Managing Director of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) for Central Asia and Mongolia, it has been reported. The meeting discussed the status of current projects and EBRD's plans to finance new initiatives. Special attention was paid to attracting investments for Kazakhstan's sustainable socio-economic development. Ozkhan said the bank plans to double its investments in Kazakhstan's economy this year. In particular, the EBRD is developing a significant project with Kazakhstan's power grid management company, KEGOC, which aims to improve the reliability of electricity supply in the country’s western regions. The largest territorial project, the construction of new sewage treatment facilities in Aktobe, was signed earlier. Funds have also been allocated for constructing new production facilities for Araltuz JSC, a leading producer of table salt, and support for women's and youth entrepreneurship. In June 2024, ahead of schedule, the new passenger terminal of Almaty Airport opened, also financed by the EBRD. The bank also participated in the IPO of the national air carrier Air Astana. Baibazarov emphasized that Kazakhstan intends to expand cooperation with the EBRD at national and regional levels, supporting the bank's desire to invest in the private sector. "Our country is ready for mutually beneficial work with the EBRD to attract investment for the implementation of projects in energy, transport and logistics, the development of renewable energy and private business," the Deputy Prime Minister said. Since the beginning of cooperation with Kazakhstan, the EBRD has invested €10.2 billion in the country's economy through 324 projects. The bank's project portfolio in Kazakhstan currently includes 121 projects worth more than €2.9 billion.

EBRD: Uzbekistan’s Economy Shows Stable Growth

Uzbekistan's economy will grow by 6.5% this year, and by 6% by 2025, according to a forecast published by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. This growth is expected due to investments in fixed capital and an increase in net exports. Central Asia's trade with Russia peaked in 2023 and played an important role in economic growth. Uzbekistan's GDP grew by 6% due to increased consumer spending driven by rising wages and credit expansion. The budget deficit amounted to 5.5%, against a forecast of 4%. According to the bank's analysts, in 2024 the budget deficit may be reduced due to energy subsidies, which will reduce government spending by about 1.5% of GDP. Economists also noted an increase in investment in the region in transportation, logistics, and export-oriented manufacturing. The economy was boosted by rising wages and real incomes, credit expansion, and intra-regional trade. "Sustained wage and real income growth, combined with a surge in foreign arrivals and the tourism sector, fueled a consumer boom, which was further supported by technological advances in consumer credit," the report states. Recent tariff reforms in Uzbekistan will also cut energy subsidies, which will reduce government spending by 1.5% of GDP, the bank said. At the same time, there are great prospects for foreign direct investment in privatization, but the chronic shortage of energy and water remains a negative factor. The decline in inflation to single-digit figures throughout the region has allowed regulators to start revising their monetary policy in favor of stimulating economic growth. The EBRD believes that the main public policy challenges in the region for 2024-2025 will be improving infrastructure and governance, tariff reforms, and harmonizing the use of common resources such as transport, water, and energy.

EBRD Launches New Training Program for Female Entrepreneurs in Kazakhstan

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development's (EBRD) Women in Microbusiness training program is being launched in Kazakhstan to support women entrepreneurs facing social or economic obstacles in their business activities. Statistics show that whilst  women manage 49 percent of all micro and small-sized businesses  in Kazakhstan, their representation in medium and large business sectors is only 36 percent and 19 percent, respectively. Reporting on the initiative, Alma Kasymova, head of the EBRD's SME (small- and medium-sized enterprises) Program in Kazakhstan, stated, "Our main goal and mission is to empower women entrepreneurs to grow and develop their micro-enterprises through affordable and quality training. We are confident that this program will help participants to expand their competencies and open new perspectives in larger business segments." The training, conducted online in Kazakh and Russian, will run for five months and comprise six business modules in marketing, sales, finance, human resources, operational management, strategic planning, as well as automation and the use of artificial intelligence (AI). Participants will be able to enrol at any time convenient for them.  . Welcoming its launch, an EBRD spokesperson announced, "This is the third implementation of the program -realized in collaboration with the training and consulting company Dialog . Previous projects allowed almost 1,500 women entrepreneurs to strengthen their skills and improve their businesses. "

EBRD Funds Upgrade of Major Highway in Uzbekistan

On 2 May, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) announced the allocation of a loan of up to $238 million (€224 million) towards the renovation of around 81 km of the 4R156 road, as well as the construction of a bridge across the Amu Darya River in the Khorezm region of western Uzbekistan. The road is a strategically important section of the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation Corridor 2a, linking the region’s administrative centre, Urgench, with the A380 road to Kazakhstan. The loan will transform the current single-carriageway category-II road into a dual-carriageway category-I road, and in addition, help upgrade supporting infrastructure along the 4R156 road. Once completed, the new road with its much-improved throughput capacity, will stimulate both trade and tourism in  Khorezm. EBRD President Odile Renaud-Basso commented: “We are supporting this project because it meets our strategic objectives for Uzbekistan and Central Asia. It is also part of the global transport and logistics infrastructure solutions covered by the European Union’s (EU) Global Gateway initiative.” In January 2024, at the Investors Forum for EU-Central Asia Transport Connectivity in Brussels, the EBRD expressed its readiness to invest around €1.5 billion in Trans-Caspian Corridor-related infrastructure and associated transport solutions over the next 2-3 years.  

EBRD Helps Improve Dushanbe’s Environment and Support Tajikistan’s Banking Sector

During a visit by Odile Renaud-Basso, President of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development to Tajikistan, on 29-30 April, the EBRD committed funds to upgrade Dushanbe's  infrastructure,  develop sustainable transportation solutions , and  support for women’s entrepreneurship. The EBRD’s loan of up to €28.45 million will help improve  transportation  in the city’s riverside area through the reconstruction of roads and  a bridge across the Varzob River, as well as the construction of dedicated bus and trolleybus lanes, and purpose-built routes for walking, cycling, electric wheelchairs etc. “We are very pleased to sign this project with the authorities of Dushanbe,” commented EBRD's president. “They have been committed to the green agenda ever since the city joined the EBRD Green Cities programme in 2019.” The Dushanbe Green City Action Plan was developed in collaboration with the EBRD to address environmental and development issues affecting the 800, 000 residents of Tajikistan’s largest municipality. Investment to  promote a strategic shift from carbon-intensive, traditional transportation towards more eco-friendly, sustainable alternatives,  aims to reduce annual carbon dioxide emissions by 37 percent. Joined by the Chairman of the National Bank of Tajikistan, Firdavs Nazrimad Tolibzoda, Renaud-Basso then signed a memorandum of understanding to support the country’s development of the Women Entrepreneurs Finance Code. Representing  providers of financial services, regulators, development banks and other stakeholders, the WE Financial Code was formed to increase financial assistance to women-led micro, small and medium enterprises, and as a globally accepted multi-stakeholder approach, help eliminate constraints and gaps in financing women entrepreneurs in Tajikistan. The EBRD has now provided fresh funds and created new growth opportunities for women-owned and managed businesses in Tajikistan. Under the auspices of its Women in Business (WiB) programme for Central Asia, a loan of US$ 5 million (€4.6 million) has been granted  to one of the country’s largest lenders, Bank Arvand, alongside technical assistance to help the bank promote women’s entrepreneurship and business activity. In addition, and under the EBRD’s Trade Facilitation Programme, a limited loan of US$ 1 million (€0.9 million) was offered to country’s leading microlenders, MDO HUMO, to help local clients both import goods, services, and equipment, and export their products.    

EBRD Adds Kazakh Companies to Blacklist

Over the past six months, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has added two Kazakh enterprises to its blacklist of entities that the bank will not do business with. One of the companies is Astana's KS-Group LLP, which produces railway machinery and equipment. The company has been barred until April 2025 due to alleged fraudulent activities. The other enterprise, whose ban runs until December 2026, is Agidel-As LLP, which is also suspected of fraud. The company's website mentions its involvement in large water-supply projects, construction of heating networks and other engineering projects. KS-Group and Agidel-As are also blacklisted by the World Bank and Asian Development Bank. Several other entities and individuals from Kazakhstan have been added to another of EBRD's blacklists, entitled 'Sanctions Based on Third-Party Findings'. Among them are the companies A3 Commerce and AltocomAsia, to which in addition to fraud, theft is also alleged. Kazakh companies that appear on EBRD's blacklists reflect the negative side of the business environment in the country. However, it does also indicate that the country's law enforcement agencies are actively fighting fraud.